Skip to main content

Our Montessori Baby and Toddler Placemats

In Montessori, babies and toddlers are given as many real experiences as possible when it comes to eating. What I mean is that they are given the chance to eat at a real table, with real dishes, and the chance to feed themselves. The same goes for other children as they grow. Children are complete humans from birth who deserve our respect, love, and beauty. 

A look at our DIY Montessori placemats for babies and toddlers.

This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. 

Giving them real materials helps to provide all that and more. So many wonderful possibilities and opportunities. A placemat may not seem like much, but it really is. It provides a baby/toddler with the chance to use real materials, it speaks to their sense of order and gives them (or plants the seeds for) the ability to set the table, and it's a beautiful touch. Practically, it can also make eating easier by keeping plates/bowls cups from sliding around. 

Now, there are tons of commercially available {these, these, and these are all beautiful} Montessori placemats. But, I wanted to try my hand at making my own. Embroidering Montessori placemats is in no way, shape or form my idea. It's been done a million times by a million people. But, I thought I would share what I did in case you were looking for an easy DIY. 

A look at our DIY Montessori placemats for babies and toddlers.

You'll Need

Your dishes 

To make these, I took the burp cloths and cut them into 4 pieces using the outer edges of the fabric. I chose this because the burp cloths were large, not distracting, absorbent and I knew they would be easy to wash/dry/clean. Plus you can't beat the price. Once I had them cut, I simply hemmed the edges with my sewing machine. 

A look at our DIY Montessori placemats for babies and toddlers.

When all the placemats were hemmed, I placed a set of our dishes on top of the placemats and traced them with the pencil. Then, I used some coordinating colors to hand stitch around the lines I had drawn. I picked the colors because I liked them, not for any particular reason. And that's literally it. I store them folded on a tray in our children's kitchen.

A look at our DIY Montessori placemats for babies and toddlers.

I only made a set of 4 for now, we do laundry pretty frequently so that has been enough. I also used the star fabric that came with to make a set of non-embroidered placemats for Henry and Nora. I will say they shrank some in the wash, but otherwise this has been a great addition to our weaning experience.

Have you made or bought Montessori placemats? 

A look at our DIY Montessori placemats for babies and toddlers.

---

Comments

Nora said…
These seem developmentally appropriate for toddlers, but I'd be interested in hearing more about why you find them useful for babies. The layout on the mat is an abstraction that babies wouldn't yet grasp: why not just model the placesetting concretely at ages before the child could understand something like layout outlines?

Popular Posts

The Ultimate Montessori Toy List -- Birth to Five -- UPDATED 2020

When you are interested in Montessori, it can be difficult to know exactly what types of products you should get for your home. Or which types of "Montessori" materials are really worth the price. There are no rules about types of products can use the name Montessori which can add to the confusion. Not to mention, every toy manufacturer slaps the word "educational" on the package for good measure! 2020 UPDATE: This list is updated for another year! Enjoy a variety of Montessori friendly finds from both major retailers and smaller shops!  So, with this post, I'm going to try to help with this confusion! Here's a list of Montessori-friendly toys and materials for babies, toddlers and preschoolers.  First, let's clarify that there is no such thing as a "Montessori toy." Montessori never created toys, but only works for classroom settings. While there are many works that I recommend for home school use, you won't find these

Sensitive Periods from Birth to 6 - A Chart and Guide

Dr. Maria Montessori spent her life observing, studying, and writing about children. During her lifetime of work she discovered that young children move through a series of special times when they are particularly attracted to specific developmental needs and interests. She called these times, sensitive periods. During the sensitive period, children learn skills related to the sensitive period with ease. They don't tire of that work, but seek it, crave it and need it. When the sensitive period passes, this intense desire is gone, never to return.  That doesn't mean the skill is lost forever once the sensitive period is over. Instead, it just means that it will take a more conscious effort to learn. As Dr. Montessori explains,  This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. "A child learns to adjust himself and make acquisitions in his sensitive periods. These are like a beam that lights interiorly a battery that furnishes energy. It is this sensibility which enables

Montessori Toddler: Favorite Toys and Activities 18 to 20 months

I've been putting off this post for a little while because I felt a little disappointed that I didn't have more to share. See, Teddy just isn't that into materials, especially those on the shelf. He tends to return to a couple of favorites over and over again and ignore all other attempts at shelf work. But, really that's my own adult feelings getting in the way of Teddy's own interests, and developmental path.  It's also me subconsciously valuing fine motor skills and stillness as more important than gross motor play and movement. I working hard not to do that, and want to normalize that all toddlers are different. All children have different interests and that concentration doesn't have to mean sitting still for long stretches of time.  This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. With all that said, here are some of Teddy's favorites over the last couple of months. Favorite Montessori Toys 18 to 20 Months I'm listing the toys that have be